Thor Hushovd (BMC) has left the Tour of Beijing in order to return to Norway, where his daughter has been hospitalised with an undisclosed illness. The Norwegian was a non-starter on stage three of the race, from Yanqing to Qiandiajian.
"Obviously, it is a big disappointment," Hushovd said, according to a BMC statement. "Of course, I wish I could finish my season in downtown Beijing on Tuesday."
Hushovd had claimed victory in the bunch sprint on the opening stage of the Tour of Beijing but lost his overall lead to Nacer Bouhanni (FDJ.fr) on stage two.
His abandon brings the curtain down on his second season at BMC. After a lacklustre 2012, Hushovd continued to struggle in the early part of this season and failed to make an impact at the classics. As the campaign progressed, so too did Hushovd’s form, however, and he finishes the year with a haul of nine victories, including the Norwegian national title and two stages at the Tour of Poland.
“I had my ups and downs in the beginning of the year. My classics were a disaster,” Hushovd admitted. “But I had nine wins, which is quite good. So in total, I am satisfied with my season."